Medical device approved to treat epilepsy

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration today approved a device to help reduce the frequency of seizures in epilepsy patients who have not responded well to medications. The RNS Stimulator consists of a small neurostimulator implanted within the skull under the scalp. The neurostimulator is connected to one or two wires (called electrodes) that are … Read more

Eyes :: Surgical errors rare but serious in ophthalmic procedures

Surgical confusions—for instance, operations involving the wrong site, the wrong patient or the wrong procedure—occur infrequently in eye surgery procedures, according to a report in the November issue of Archives of Ophthalmology, one of the JAMA/Archives journals. Although most surgical confusions cause little or no permanent injury, they may involve serious consequences for the patient, physician and profession, yet could often be prevented.

Prostate Cancer :: Radiation seed implant decreases risk of death over watchful waiting

Prostate cancer patients cut their risk of dying of the disease in half when they receive radiation seed implants (brachytherapy) to treat their cancer, compared to those who don’t receive active treatment (watchful waiting/active surveillance), within six months from being diagnosed with localized prostate cancer, according to a study presented October 31, 2007, at the American Society for Therapeutic Radiology and Oncology’s 49th Annual Meeting in Los Angeles.

Ear :: Ear infection superbug discovered to be resistant to all pediatric antibiotics

Researchers have discovered a strain of bacteria resistant to all approved drugs used to fight ear infections in children, according to an article published today in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). A pair of pediatricians discovered the strain because it is their standard practice to perform an uncommon procedure called tympanocentesis (ear tap) on children when several antibiotics fail to clear up their ear infections. The procedure involves puncturing the child’s eardrum and draining fluid to relieve pressure and pain. Analyzing the drained fluid is the only way to describe the bacterial strain causing the infection.

Breast Cancer :: Breast reconstruction surgical webcast for breast cancer awareness month

Women with breast cancer often seek immediate breast reconstruction after a mastectomy to help them regain a semblance of their body and for their psychological peace of mind. As part of Breast Cancer Awareness Month in October, Thomas Jefferson University Hospital is re-airing its webcast on one of the most often performed breast reconstruction surgical procedures, using muscle tissue from a patient’s back.

Bone :: Bone-growing nanomaterial could improve orthopaedic implants

For orthopaedic implants to be successful, bone must meld to the metal that these artificial hips, knees and shoulders are made of. A team of Brown University engineers, led by Thomas Webster, has discovered a new material that could significantly increase this success rate.

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